Statement of Faith
If you're looking for information on what makes Substance stylistically unique check out our Core Values, but below you'll find what makes Substance theologically unique.
At Substance, we are absolutely committed to sound Biblical theology.
Of course, "unique" may not the best word to describe our Statement of Faith. Even though our methods and worship styles may be progressive, our doctrines are as traditional as they come.
Below you'll find our statement to be quite similar to the vast majority of evangelical churches (which was intentional). Substance plants a large number of churches ranging from charismatic to conservative evangelical. Because only 9.1% of Americans go to any Evangelical church of any kind, we're not a church that sees much logic in dividing over all sorts of theological issues. And even though we are an ultra-contemporary, non-denominational church we belong to many large and notable evangelical organizations such as the National Association of Evangelicals and the Association of Related Churches.
So below is a list of a few essentials.
We believe that the Holy Bible, and only the Bible, is the authoritative Word of God. It alone is the final authority in determining all doctrinal truths. The Bible, in its original writing, is both inspired and inerrant. (II Timothy 3:16; II Peter 1:20-21; Proverbs 30:5; Romans 16:25-26)
We believe that the Godhead eternally exists in three persons: the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. These three are one God, having precisely the same nature, attributes and perfections, and are worthy of precisely the same homage, confidence and obedience. (Mk 12:29; John 1:1-4; Mt. 28:19-20)
We believe that Jesus Christ is God the Son, the Second Person of the Trinity. Jesus Christ is 100% man and 100% God. He is the only man ever to have lived a sinless life. (John 1:1 & 14, 20:28; I Timothy 3:16; Isaiah 9:6; Php.2:5-6; I Timothy 2:5)
Jesus Christ is the only-begotten Son of the Father, conceived by the Holy Spirit in the Virgin Mary. Therefore, Jesus is the Son of God. (Matthew 1:18, 20, 23; Luke 1:27-35; Isaiah 7:14)
Man was created good and upright, but by voluntary transgression he fell; his only hope of redemption is in Jesus Christ, the Son of God. (Genesis 1:26-31, 3:1-7; Romans 5:12-21)
We are saved by grace (which is undeserved and unearned) through faith in Jesus Christ, His death, burial, and resurrection. Salvation is a gift from God, not a result of our good works or of any human efforts. (Ephesians 2:8-9; Galatians 2:16, 3:8; Titus 3:5; Romans 10:9-10; Acts 16:31; Hebrews 9:22)
Because Jesus Christ lived a sinless life, His blood shed on the cross of Calvary is 100% sufficient to cleanse us of all sins when appropriated individually through repentance and faith. Jesus allowed Himself to be punished for the sins we have committed, enabling all who believe to be freed from the penalty of sin (which is death). (I John 1:7; Revelation 1:5, 5:9; Colossians 1:20; Romans 3:10-12 & 23; 5:9; John 1:29)
Repentance is a commitment to turn away from sin in every area of our lives and to follow Christ. Through repentance we individually receive forgiveness of sins and appropriate salvation. (Acts 2:38, 3:19)
Christ Indwells in All Believers
A Christian is a person who has invited the Lord Jesus Christ to come and live inside him by the Holy Spirit. He is putting his trust in what Christ accomplished for him when He died, was buried, and rose again from the dead. (John 1:12, 14:17, 23, 15:4; Romans 8:11; Revelation 3:20)
After receiving the Lord Jesus Christ, the new convert is commanded by the Word of God to be baptized in water in the Name of the Lord. (Matthew 28:19; Acts 2:38)
The church is the Body of Christ, the habitation of God through the Spirit, with divine appointments for the fulfillment of Christ's great commission. Every person who is born of the spirit is an integral part of the church as member of the body of believers. (Ephesians 1:22, 2:19-22; Hebrews 12:23)
The Lord’s Supper
The Lord's Supper is a unique time of communion in the presence of God when the elements of bread and wine (or grape juice), expressing in some spiritual way the body and blood the Lord Jesus Christ, are taken by believers in remembrance of Christ's sacrifice on the cross. (I Corinthians 10:16, 11:23-25; Mark 16:16; Acts 8:12, 8:36-38, 10:47-48; Matthew 26:26-28)
Baptism/Infilling of the Holy Spirit
Initiated at Pentecost, this ongoing baptism (or infilling) is the promise of the Father, given by Jesus after His ascension, to empower the Church to supernaturally communicate the gospel throughout the whole earth (Acts 1:8; 8:15-16; 19:2; Mk.16:20). With this regular infilling, the believer has the potential of experiencing various manifestations such as scripturally based prophetic experiences, unknown tongues, and other visible outward signs. (Acts 10:46; 19:6; 8:18; 2:4-6; 7-18)
Sanctification is the ongoing process of being set apart for God, characterized by our yielding to God to complete the development of Christ's character in us. A lifestyle of developing righteousness and holiness is the evidence to all men that Christ's Spirit lives within us. (I Thessalonians 4:3, 5:23; II Corinthians 3:18, 6:14-18; II Thessalonians 2:1-3; Romans 8:29, 12:1-2; Hebrews 21:11)
Healing of the Sick
Healing of the sick is illustrated in the life and ministry of Jesus and is included in the commission of Jesus to His disciples. Healing is a provision of Christ's atonement on the cross and is given as a sign which is to follow believers. (Matthew 8:16-17; Acts 8:6-7; James 5:14-16; III John 2; Psalm 103:2-3; Isaiah 53:5; Mark 16:17-18) (Note: This does not imply the false concept that immediate healing always accompanies true faith. There are many righteous people in scripture who didn't immediately receive healing in this life. Rather, healing can also be a process which is finalized by entrance into heaven.)
Jesus Christ will physically and visibly return to earth for the second time to establish His kingdom. This will occur at a time undisclosed by the Scriptures. (Revelation 1:7; Acts 1:9-11; Matthew 24:30, 26:63-64; I Thessalonians 4:15,17; II Thessalonians 1:7-8)
We believe that Jesus Christ was physically resurrected from the dead in a glorified body three days after His death on the cross. One day all believers in Christ will also be physically resurrected in glorified bodies to their reward in heaven with God. (Luke 24:16, 36, 39; Philippians 1:21-23, 3:21; I Corinthians 15:42, 44; John 2:19-21, 20:26-28, 21:4; Acts 24:15)
Heaven is the eternal dwelling place of all who believe in Jesus Christ. (II Corinthians 5:1; I Peter 1:4; Hebrews 11:16; John 17:24; Matthew 5:3, 12, 20, 6:20, 19:21, 25:34)
After living one life on earth, those who have rejected Christ will be judged justly by God and sent to Hell, where they will be eternally tormented together with the devil and the fallen angels. (Hebrews 9:27; Matthew 25:41-46; Dan. 12:2; Revelation 14:9-11, 20:12-15, 21:8; Mark 9:43-48)